Andy on Enterprise Software

All in the timing

October 24, 2007

Business Objects Q3 results were rather soft, showing license revenue (USD 139M) just 2% up year over year. There were eight deals over USD 1 million, broadly similar to recent quarters. The business line called “information discovery and delivery” i.e. the classic reporting tools, did least well, while enterprise performance management was somewhat healthier.

However overall this is rather feeble growth (by contrast Informatica had a fine quarter, so the excuses offered by management about weak markets seem pretty lame). Perhaps there have been too many acquisitions to digest, and of course now the swallower has itself been gulped up by the much bigger fish of SAP. The price tag SAP paid look like a fairly high premium to the underlying Business of Business Objects, as reflected in its share price dip on announcement, but these results suggest that Business Objects shareholders at least can be very satisfied indeed with the price they got.